Honoring Native American Veterans

In the Smithsonian lies the Native American Veterans Memorial, part of the National Museum Of The Native American.

In the Smithsonian Museum lies the Native American Veterans Memorial, part of the National Museum Of The Native American. | The Black Lion Journal | The Black Lion
In the Smithsonian Museum lies the Native American Veterans Memorial, part of the National Museum Of The Native American.

The Honorable Ben Nighthorse Campbell (Northern Cheyenne) and Chickasaw Nation Lieutenant Governor Jefferson Keel lead an advisory committee in charge of outreach and advising on plans for the Native American Memorial.

The committee has held consultations all throughout the twelve National Museum of the American Indian NCAI regions of the country to discuss plans for the memorial:

 

National Native American Veterans Memorial
Confirmed Regional Consultations

October 20, 2015 San Diego, CA
NCAI Annual Convention

January 21, 2016 Durant, OK
Choctaw Nation Community Center

March 14, 2016 Phoenix, AZ
National Indian Gaming Association Convention

May 18, 2016 Pembroke, NC
Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina Headquarters

June 1, 2016 Uncasville, CT
Mohegan Sun Casino

June 27, 2016 Spokane, WA
NCAI Mid Year Conference

June 29, 2016 Crow Agency, MT
Little Big Horn College

July 19, 2016 Oklahoma City, OK
Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes hosting

July 20, 2016 Lawton, OK
Comanche Nation hosting

July 21, 2016 Tulsa, OK
Cherokee Nation’s Hard Rock Casino

September 28, 2016 Washington, DC
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

October 5, 2016 Chandler, AZ
Gila River Indian Community

October 21, 2016 Fairbanks, AK
Alaska Federation of Natives Conference

October 28, 2016 Cherokee, NC
Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians

November 10, 2016 Highland, CA
San Manuel Band of Mission Indians

November 14, 2016 Rancho Mirage, CA
Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians

 
Travel throughout the regions accompanied a traveling banner “Patriot Nations: Native Americans in Our Nation’s Armed Forces” made possible with the support from the San Manual Band of Mission Indians. The traveling banner, as an exhibition, aimed to tell the much needed stories of Native American Veterans while also discussing the museum’s plans to build the memorial.

A design for the memorial will be selected by a juried competition. The National Native American Veterans Memorial will be located prominently on the NMAI’s grounds on the National Mall, between the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum and the U.S. Capitol, and will honor the immense contributions and patriotism of Native Americans in the U.S. Armed Forces.

Below are a few images in honor of Native American Veterans.

Diné [Navajo] code talkers Corporal Henry Bahe, Jr. and Private First Class George H. Kirk. Bougainville, South Pacific, December 1943. Credit: National Archives and Records Administration 127-MN-69889-B.
Diné [Navajo] code talkers Corporal Henry Bahe, Jr. and Private First Class George H. Kirk. Bougainville, South Pacific, December 1943. Credit: National Archives and Records Administration 127-MN-69889-B.

 

Marine Corps Women Reservists, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, Oct. 16, 1943. From left, Minnie Spotted Wolf (Blackfoot), Celia Mix (Potawatomi) and Viola Eastman (Chippewa). Credit: National Archives and Records Administration 535876.
Marine Corps Women Reservists, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, Oct. 16, 1943. From left, Minnie Spotted Wolf (Blackfoot), Celia Mix (Potawatomi) and Viola Eastman (Chippewa). Credit: National Archives and Records Administration 535876.

 

John Emhoolah (Kiowa/Arapaho, b. 1929) was one of five brothers who served in the military. Upon his return from the Korean War, he became active in the fight to restore Native Nations’ treaty rights. Credit: Photo Courtesy of Debbie Emhoolah.
John Emhoolah (Kiowa/Arapaho, b. 1929) was one of five brothers who served in the military. Upon his return from the Korean War, he became active in the fight to restore Native Nations’ treaty rights. Credit: Photo Courtesy of Debbie Emhoolah.

 

Private First Class Lori Ann Piestewa (Hopi, 1979–2003) was the first woman killed in action during Operation Iraqi Freedom and the first known Native American woman to die in combat. Credit: Photo by Piestewa Family/Getty Images.
Private First Class Lori Ann Piestewa (Hopi, 1979–2003) was the first woman killed in action during Operation Iraqi Freedom and the first known Native American woman to die in combat. Credit: Photo by Piestewa Family/Getty Images.

 

Master Sergeant Joshua Wheeler (Cherokee, 1975–2015) was a member of the army’s elite Delta Force and the recipient of 11 Bronze Stars during his military career. Wheeler died on Oct. 22, 2015, while rescuing prisoners from the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) near Hawijah in northern Iraq. He was the first known U.S. military casualty in the fight against ISIS. Credit: Photo courtesy of U.S. Army.
Master Sergeant Joshua Wheeler (Cherokee, 1975–2015) was a member of the army’s elite Delta Force and the recipient of 11 Bronze Stars during his military career. Wheeler died on Oct. 22, 2015, while rescuing prisoners from the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) near Hawijah in northern Iraq. He was the first known U.S. military casualty in the fight against ISIS. Credit: Photo courtesy of U.S. Army.

 

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All images and captions taken from American Indian Magazine. Posted on The Black Lion Journal this 11th of November, 2016, Veterans Day.

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